With Guns N’ Roses bassist Duff McKagan set to release his highly anticipated solo record Tenderness at the end of May he has been doing a lot of press lately. During an appearance on Sirius XM’s Volume channel, he discussed several topics including the opioid epidemic, mass shootings and the #metoo movement. McKagan is an outspoken supporter of celebrities speaking out on these issues saying the following:
McKagan quoted basketball player Lebron James saying “He’s a smart guy and he’s an activist and he does stuff with his money and he’s an American citizen. And it is ‘we the people,’ last I checked. And him saying, him voicing his opinion is what we’re supposed to do, I thought.” McKagan then mentions he saw a lot of people responding to James’ tweet, telling him to “shut up and play basketball.”
“The first newspapers that we had in America, it was in the Northeast. The printing press, they could print, like, six newspapers per town. This is 1620, let’s say,” McKagan explained. “And the back page was blank. They would have the articles, and then ‘John Smith’ could write his commentary on whatever article. He’d put his commentary, his address, his name and he passed it around…But you had to put your name and your address. This is before America was even born. But this is what we were trying to form a country around – everybody having a voice. And somewhere along the way, ‘Yeah shut up and sing,’ ‘shut up and play basketball,’ and even saying ‘shut up.’ This is America. Speak out.”
McKagan will be hitting the road starting in May to support the record and apparently has some unannounced European dates coming up. Guns N’ Roses on the other hand will be touring in late September through middle of October according to a recent interview Slash gave.